Saw this at profgrrl’s and it made me think.  It also appealed to the history geek in me.  And as I don’t seem to have much else to say right, I figured why not.

1) Challenger space shuttle exploded (1986)
I don’t actually remember this event so much as I remember my brother’s reaction to it.  I know my parents told me about it. I know I thought it was sad. But I remember that my brother was deeply upset. So upset that I was surprised by the amount of emotion. And I remember connecting Challenger with a toy spaceship my brother had. I don’t know why. I just did.

2) Berlin Wall Falls down (1989)
I have some memory of watching some of this on TV. I think. I fold my lack of knowledge into the category “My parents didn’t spend a lot of time talking about current events.”  (Instead they talked about other issues that interested both of them.  I learned a lot.  Just not about current events.)

3) Oklahoma City federal building bombing (1995)
I have clear memories of watching the aftermath of the bombing on TV. Seeing interviews with the family of victims. But where I was when it occurred….nothing. See the above category.

4) OJ Verdict (1995)
This one is easier. I was in gym class. I know this because when I got to the class after gym (health) everyone else knew. I remember being surprised by the verdict. I even remember that the health classroom was in a trailer outside the gym.

5) Princess Diana dies (1997)
I was home with my family although I don’t think we knew until the next day. I remember being stunned by all the old footage of Diana and her family. I felt huge sympathy for someone so caught in the public’s eyes. What I remember most clearly from this tragedy is feeling empathy for her kids. Suddenly I knew that other people’s parents died in a way I hadn’t before.

6) Columbine Massacre (1999)
I was sitting in history class. We were watching some movie when the teacher burst in and flipped to the live coverage at Columbine. I had several moments of stark terror until I remembered that the friend who would have gone to Columbine High had moved to Maine. Watching the aftermath of Columbine as a High School student is still the root of my frustration around security measures that have a mostly psychological effect.  Seriously, I have a whole rant with examples and all.  

7) JFK Jr Plane Crash (1999)
I have no idea. I only remember feeling sorry that the Kennedy family had to go through this. Well, that and scoffing at all mentions of a curse.

8) Bush/Gore election craziness (2000)
At home, at school, at every where else because this drug out so long. I remember laughing when I saw that the news stations had taken to calling it Indecision 2000. Especially after the anchors had been saying the night before that the nation would be rallying around a new leader that day. (I have a ‘special’ sense of humor.)

9) September 11 (2001)
I was in my dorm room. I didn’t have classes on Tuesday that semester and was enjoying doing nothing. Then my roommate came back and turned the TV on. Then I started having conversations with the TV talking heads about who might have done this and how of course Israel and Egypt were the first to speak out against it. (Israel and Egypt are the two single largest recipients of US foreign aid.)

10) Space ship Columbia disintegrates (2003)
I was in the City with the State School I didn’t attend for a church meeting. Actually, two meetings. Which meant that I and two friends who were attending the same meetings were all in a motel that morning.  We discussed the tragedy over the decent continental breakfast.  If Challenger got to my brother more than me, Columbia got to my emotions more directly than his.

11)Hurricane Katrina hits (2005)
I was in Big Eastern City for seminary. I mostly remember not being shocked at the quality or speed of the government’s response. Yes, that would be cynicism.